Seventeen years ago, I walked into a world I never knew existed. Television and movies could never adequately prepare me for the reality of becoming a 911 Operator. In my world, tragedy happens every day, every few minutes, and always leaves me asking why. Nothing is more raw and true than the emotions you hear within the first thirty seconds of a tragedy and I experience them right along with my callers and first responders.
My novel is inspired by people, in the wake of a tragedy, that turned grief into something that benefited the rest of society. A few examples of these incredible feats: the Amber Alert program created after the death of Amber Hagerman, the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children formed after notable child abductions of Etan Patz and Adam Walsh, and Mother’s Against Drunk Driving created after Candice Lightner’s thirteen-year-old daughter was killed by a drunken, hit and run driver.
Sometimes, when everything goes exactly right, there is still nothing a first responder can do to change the outcome of horrific events. These organizations prove that people can give meaning to tragedy.